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Kilian Jornet hopes to set a new fastest time record for Everest next in May 2017. He flew out to the Himalayas yesterday to prepare for the ultimate challenge – breaking the solo speed record for an ascent and descent of Everest.

The 6th highest peak in the world – as a ‘training exercise’
He will start off by taking on Cho Oyu (8201m) – the sixth highest peak on the planet – which will act as a ‘training’ exercise.

Jornet will be accompanied by his partner Emelie Forsberg. This will be the first 8000m peak for Forsberg. Cho Oyu is not as technically difficult as some climbs, but the two athletes are giving themselves just two weeks to acclimatise.

And on to Everest…
Around the middle of May, Killian will then move towards Everest with the aim of finally completing the ‘Summits of my Mind’ project, that has already seen him set climbing records for Mont Blanc, the Matterhorn, Aconcagua and Denali.

He will start by basing himself in the Rongbuk monastery at 5000m and will be accompanied only by his long-time collaborator Seb Montaz.

His first attempt at setting an Everest record in September 2016 came to nothing as poor weather prevented an ascent. “For this kind of expedition, weather conditions are crucial,” says Liv Sansoz from Salomon. “And it may be good for Kilian that he did not succeed the first time, it allowed him to gain experience, and it proves that it is a challenge, even for Kilian.”

Via the North Face
Jornet’s plan is to ascend via the north face. This slope is not as steep or busy, but is less well known. His advanced base camp will be established at 6300m and Kilian will use this to acclimatise further and review possible routes.

When the attempt comes, it will be solo, without oxygen and with minimal equipment. This list below details what he plans to take with him.

“I can’t help but worry about this latest adventure”

 

This is an unbelievable challenge, but is it too much? Profeet ambassador Robbie Britton is concerned that Kilian’s quest for speed is putting himself in excessive danger.

“Kilian is a class apart in the world of mountain and ultra running, but I can’t help but worry about this latest adventure. He’s going lightweight, without oxygen, for a speed record.

“We know he performs better than anyone else in the world in ultras at high altitude, but no one can be sure how he will be above 8000m.

Two of my favourite mountaineers were Joe Tasker and Pete Boardman, both extremely competent Himalayan mountaineers who never came back from Everest. I hope the project is a brilliant success, but even more I hope it’s an adventure he returns from, with a summit or not”.

We sign off with a few words from Jornet himself, perhaps already anticipating criticisms about the project:

There are people who think it’s madness but for me the mountain is a space where everyone should be free to do what they think they can do. “

The Profeet Run Lab team wish him all the best in his attempt and hope, like Robbie, that successful or not he returns safely. If anyone can do it, it’s Kilian Jornet.


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